fan, harisen

Chinese New Year!

If you are celebrating the lunar New Year, I hope you enjoy your holiday and time off work.

This monkey is part of the (16thC?) plasterwork in the old court (as in court-room) area of Chirk Castle in Wales;  I visited the castle (and took the photo) last year on one of my Northerly trips. The 蟠桃 long life peach does not appear in the original; I don't think it grows in Wales.

Wishing you all happiness, good health and success in the year of the Monkey!

fan, harisen

Happy New Year to everybody!

Sorry for the long periods of silence - the internet is a few steps down the pecking order in terms of priorities these days but that doesn't mean that I'm not thinking of you all and wishing you a healthy, happy and successful 2016!

I don't have any New Year photos so will convey my greetings with photos of cakes in the magnificent decorated cake shop in Oxford's covered market and with a photo of my Christmas tree which will stay decorated for a few days yet.  Go under the cut for the photos:

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On this day - 23 August

A friend returned from Norway this weekend with spectacular fjord photos and splendid Viking chocolates.  For PS, my mind was on Pip and I thought how much he would have loved to have played the weed-strewn troll-hound in the fjords!  Imagine the fun if he had happened upon a few vikings to chase as well -

And, for the rest of you, here are the chocolates:

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I hope that the summer is going well for you.  Sorry about the long silence on my part - but at least I bring chocolate!
fan, harisen

Happy lunar New Year!

If you are celebrating the lunar New Year today, I hope you enjoy a wonderful time!

Sorry for my silence here.  I haven't forgotten you but RL has been in a pestering mood and I don't like the idea of making a post here and then not having time to respond to comments (would be rude - even sheep have better manners than that! Especially Shaun). 
fan, harisen

On this day - for Guy Gibson 19th September

Guy Gibson, pilot and commander:  12 August 1918 - 19 September 1944

gibson in cap smiling by fortress clean adjusted crop

On this day 70 years ago, a great airman perished. Born in India, died in the Netherlands, Guy Gibson lived in the air and in England and Wales. In his 26 years of life, he loved the sea and the coastline as well as aeroplanes;  his mother's family were Cornish seafarers.  Dogs were another favourite of his.

His willingness to practise, his determination, energy and courage overcame his failure to shine in anything at school.  When circumstance in 1943 offered the chance to prove himself uniquely in the national eye, his good qualities did not let him down.
gackt blond

Message to a friend in the Netherlands

Hello!  I received your letter - it is good to hear from you.  I don't have your current address so I will send a PM to your LJ account - please take a look when you have time.

Did you see that Gackt is officially promoting mushrooms?!  That is to show that he is a fun guy (fungi) ha ha

best wishes
tribute, flowers, sanzo

seasonal fruit

This is the start of our summer season so English strawberries are ripening and are lovely.  Meanwhile, the season of one of the imported fruits that I like has already closed.  I mean the blood orange which we import from Spain and Italy.  It looks strange inside - probably you would think that it had gone bad!:

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tribute, flowers, sanzo

Flowers in Japanese style - ikebana display in Oxford

On Sunday, I visited an exhibition by the Oxford Ikebana Study Group (I don't belong to this but do like flowers!) and thought that people might be interested to see some examples of the varied displays on offer.  There was a haiku theme - each display had a card with a printed haiku which had been used to suggest the shape, colour and texture of the display.  I confess to moving some of the cards temporarily to photograph the flowers which is why they don't all appear in the pictures; if anyone is keen to know, I can probably give the text of the poems in the photos as the cards are legible in the original size.

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tulip, purple

Happy Easter!

If you are celebrating Easter, I hope that you enjoy a great holiday.  And, if you don't celebrate Easter, I send you good wishes anyway for a happy, healthy and prosperous Spring - enjoy the animals in the picture!

I took the photo below recently at Hampton Poyle, a village in the county of Oxfordshire (i.e. in the region where I live).  West Oxfordshire is traditional sheep country: rolling green hills and plenty of skipping lambs at this time of year.  Please click on the image for a larger size.